December 8, 2022

Although people have been keeping their valuables at home for ages, our homes themselves have now also become more valuable because of the plethora of advanced devices that power them. Smart locks for smart homes are becoming more common in the market, even though not everyone is still convinced of their foolproof security. That said, threats don’t only come through the front door, though, and typical smart locks can’t do anything about windows or other types of doors, for that matter. There is definitely a market waiting to be conquered here, and this smart lock module concept is designed specifically to target one particular type of door or window, the type that slides open to give access to the people and treasures inside your humble abode.

Designer: Haechan Ryu

Typical smart door locks are designed to work only with the most common type of front door, the one that has a knob to turn and swings open or close. Their designs are pretty much pointless for sliding doors, which are sometimes easier to break into because of their location at the back or sides of houses. This kind of door offers an opportunity to design not only a different type of lock but also a lock that offers a convenience you might not be able to have with the conventional smart door lock.

The Plus Link Z concept, designed to work with a real-world Plus Link smart home security platform, is practically the combination of a smart door lock, a security camera, and a slide door opener. The first two functions are pretty much on par with any kind of smart lock, allowing the homeowner to remotely lock or unlock a door as well as keep an eye on people outside the door. It might be possible to eventually add some sort of face recognition to this external camera, but monitoring is its primary purpose for this design.

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What makes this IoT security module a little different is that it can also automatically open and close the sliding door. Typical smart door locks can only lock and unlock doors, leaving you to manually push or pull the door. The Plus Link Z uses motorized gears that run the door’s top frame to slide it left or right. Because of this design, it isn’t necessary to change or modify the door itself, and you simply have to install the security module above it and the attached camera on the outside.

The Plus Link Z concept, while innovative, also looks a bit complicated and probably needs a professional to install it. It also raises concern whether those gears will eventually damage the door frame through its friction. Nonetheless, the idea itself is commendable in trying to tackle an often overlooked security problem at home, where the front door might be smartly secured while the other doors and windows are left vulnerable to a simple break-in.